I don’t know the exact number. Creating an actual reckoning of those volumes would probably fill me with so much guilt I would immediately leave the bedroom and turn on the television.
Right now, I am reading:
The Bronte’s Went to Woolworth’s (Rachel Ferguson)
Mrs. Tim of the Regiment (D. E. Stevenson)
Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell (Susanna Clarke)
The Hunger Games (Suzanne Collins)
But summer is approaching, and I have summer reading lists on the brain. I still sometimes prepare these for myself. They usually include some of the thirty-odd volumes which seem to have a permanent residence in the stack of to-be-read books; and other books, newer books, which have caught the changing pleasure of my infantile attention span for the moment.
I know my planned summer reading will include Marilynne Robinson’s Home; I’ve been saving it to read when I was in the right frame of mind, as well as – and I am somewhat bracing myself already – George Eliot’s Middlemarch. When George Eliot last appeared on my blog, it was related to an article I had read about George Eliot that made comparisons to Jane Austen and even – to a degree – wrote about these two authors as though they wrote the same type of novel.
Because I don’t know whether I entirely agree with the conclusions I reached in that post, at book group last weekend I had a very brief conversation with someone who is far more well read and thoughtful about these matters – and who certainly has what I would judge to be a far less emotional attachment to Jane Austen – than me. From that conversation, I have determined – the academic within requires it of me – to let George Eliot have her fair say.
So, maybe one of you will add Middlemarch to your summer reading list, and we can discuss our findings. It’s currently winging its way to me; in the interim, lest it come up yet again, my dearest sister, I am (it was at the top of the list!) determined to finish The Bronte’s Went to Woolworth’s, though I confess I have yet to find myself on an even keel in that novel.
What are you going to read this summer?